Santa Clara County Extends Coronavirus 'Emergency'

Doug Sovern
February 11, 2020 - 3:20 pm
A medical worker learns how to wear masks during a medical training session at People's Hospital of Chengmai County, south China's Hainan province, Feb. 11, 2020.



Two new cases of coronavirus now in Santa Clara County prompted the Board of Supervisors to declare a state of health emergency, an extension of an earlier decree.

The number of confirmed cases of coronavirus has increased in a week in Santa Clara County, leading to new action from the Board of Supervisors.

“We have two victims of coronavirus in our community, so, yes, I think identified victims is part of what prompted the declaration of a state of emergency,” Supervisor Cindy Chavez said. 

Chavez says the initial declaration was set to expire, so the board voted to renew and extend it, this time for a full month. 

Chavez tells KCBS Radio it does not mean there's a worsening threat to public health, but declaring an emergency will make the county eligible for state and federal funds, if the county response to the coronavirus requires that. 

“What happens is when local governments spend money where the federal government has said, ‘Okay, this is an emergency,’ it allows us, in a formal way, to reimburse them for expenditures that we have to fight that particular issue over and above what we’d normally have in our budgets,” Chavez said. 

The new state of emergency will last until March 11.